Taking a Deep Dive into Facebook

At the last mesh conference, one of the most engaging sessions was Janice Diner’s look at Facebook beyond the Wall. For many people, it was fascinating to see how a growing number of companies were using Facebook to do everything from sell shampoo and operate loyalty programs to run contests and provide compelling video.

With Facebook become a more interesting part of the social media landscape, we decided to have Janice come to meshmarketing to provide more insight into how Facebook continues to evolve and what companies are doing to leverage it.

Here’s a mini-Q&A with Janice, who pointed out there are more than 16 million Canadians on Facebook, 9 million Canadians visit Facebook on a given day and they spend five and a half hours a month in the social network.

1. Why do you think Facebook Pages have become so popular?

The popularity of Facebook Pages has become one of the extensions of the users social web experience. For some marketers, their Facebook fan bases have become their largest web presence, outstripping brand sites or e-mail programs. The power of social recommendations is one of the big drivers. Creating opportunities for recommendations from friends have proven to be a great kind of marketing. Facebook Pages is one of the ways that enable brands and businesses to make customers their best advocates.

2. Can you point to any companies that are doing a particularly good job with their Facebook Pages?

There are many companies engaging with their consumers through Facebook both on Pages and through the Facebook’s Open Graph.

Some examples are: With the Starbucks Card Facebook application, I can purchase a cup of coffee for my friends without ever leaving Facebook. This holiday season EBay GroupGifts, a Facebook open-graph gifting service, helps Facebook users get together and buy gifts. If I want to book a plane ticket with Delta Airlines, I can do so inside Facebook with their Delta Ticket Counter. I visit the New York Times and log in with Facebook and I can now see what articles my friends are reading and recommending. Soon, I will be checking in with Facebook Places to a new restaurant while I am travelling and see what my fellow Facebook foodies recommend last time they ate there.

3. What do you see over the horizon with Facebook Pages now that companies have embraced things such as custom tabs?

Businesses and brands now have a great opportunity to be innovative and create lasting connections with their consumers. But fasten your seat belt; it is going to get a bit disruptive out there.

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